Empowering Municipalities for Environmental Management

Empowering Municipalities for Environmental Management


It is the ELC’s view that municipalities have the potential to play a pivotal role in environmental management and protection in Alberta. Municipalities have the authority to control and regulate many private land uses. As well, municipalities have the responsibility for engaging in local land use planning through the use of statutory plans (for example municipal development plans and area structure plans) and land use by-laws. The ELC would like to see environmental management and protection as a priority in the activities of municipalities.


By way of summary, our recommendations fall into five broad areas:


    1. Protection and management of the environment is a valid municipal planning purpose and, as such, should be expressly recognized in the MGA.
    2. The MGA should incorporate by-law purposes specific to protection and management of the environment.
    3. The MGA should expand the enforcement tools available to municipalities for the purposes of environmental protection and management.
    4. The MGA should expand the revenue generation options available to municipalities to enable environmental stewardship and, particularly, land conservation.
    5. The MGA should enhance opportunities for public participation in municipal planning processes.


Click here to read the full set of recommendations.



The Environmental Law Centre (ELC) has been seeking strong and effective environmental laws since it was founded in 1982. The ELC is dedicated to providing credible, comprehensive and objective legal information regarding natural resources, energy and environmental law, policy and regulation in Alberta. The ELC’s mission is to educate and champion for strong laws and rights so all Albertans can enjoy clean water, clean air and a healthy environment. Our vision is a society where laws secure an environment that sustains current and future generations.

As a charity, the Environmental Law Centre depends on your financial support. Help us to continue to educate and champion for strong environmental laws, through tools such as our blog and all of our other resources, so that all Albertans can enjoy a healthy environment. Your support makes a difference.
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